tv ABC World News With Diane Sawyer ABC December 13, 2010 6:30pm-7:00pm EST
tonight on "world news" -- severe weather, epic snow, collapsing roofs, stranded drivers, and now the arctic cold. a judge says it's unconstitutional to require health insurance. so what happens to the president's reform? suicide aftermath. mark madoff story. brian ross with new details. shadow scholar? college cheating. using your parent's credit card? and stormy seas. more cruise ships rocked by powerful waves. so what is going on?
good evening to all of you. and from montana to maine, north dakota, central florida, there was no escaping the wicked one-two weather punch today. in minneapolis, they're still reeling from the metrodome will collapsed in spectacular fashion yesterday under the weight of 4 million pounds of snow. across the country, at least 14 deaths already blamed on the brutal conditions. and take a look at the map. more than half of the country has been hammered. the upper midwest bearing the brunt. an much as 2 feet of snow up north. temperatures dropping into single digits. windchill making it worse. so clayton sendell leads us off tonight, under the sagging me o metrodo metrodome. >> reporter: it is sagging quite a bit. you can see, right there, where the roof finally gave way under the weight of all that snow. and, you know, normally, they keep it about 6 degrees for a football game but, as you can see, tonight the actual
temperature inside, 3 degrees. it's all thanks to that monster storm which may be done with minnesota but is still wreaking havoc across the rest of the east. the storm continued its slow miserable grind across the country today. from illinois where whiteout conditions made roads treacherous. to indiana where this morning at least 70 drivers were stranded. in wisconsin, they were digging out from under 22 inches of snow. at airports around the region, they're trying to get back on track after a weekend of canceled flights. >> my flight from chicago to cleveland has gotten canceled and it's rebooked for tuesday afternoon. >> reporter: down in florida, the governor declared a state of emergency. the cold is threatening everything from citrus crops to green beans. the system is now pushing northeast into canada. but bitter cold will linger. >> the cole will impact the eastern third of the country at least another day or two.
>> reporter: it's also a deadly storm. in at least four states, people have been killed in traffic accidents. there is new danger from double digit below zero windchills in places like minnesota. dr. joseph clinton is seeing more frostbite and hypothermia patients showing up in his minneapolis e.r. >> at 3 degrees windchill, skin can freeze in minutes. >> reporter: then there is the collapse souffle that is the minneapolis metrodome. done in by high winds and heavy snow. tonight, the minnesota vikings will borrow a stadium from detroit to play the new york giants. the offer of free tickets enticed the brave to line up this morning in detroit's 12 degree temperatures. today, workers were trying to figure out how to fix the metrodome. that challenge now falls to jim hidelburger and his crew, working two shifts around the clock. >> everything's a challenge, right? >> reporter: and they are on a tight deadline. they've only got one week to fix
this roof before a game here next monday night or they'll have to find somewhere else to play, diane. >> sure hard to see how they can do that. thank you. there's been a frantic search and rescue mission under way all day during whiteout conditions in indiana. as dozens of vehicles were stranded along the highway, some of the drivers trapped more than 12 hours. chris bury is there. >> reporter: in the flat and frozen understood it da of northern indiana, the highways looked like snowy junkyards. strong winds piled up huge drifts. leading to numerous accidents. leaving at least 70 cars and trucks stranded. >> how many cars and trucks have you pulled out already? >> truckwise, about ten. carwise, i've lost count. >> reporter: shawn cunningham who took these pictures on his phone was trying to get home to chicago from fort wayne. >> we were stuck probably for about 13 hours overnight.
so we were incredibly lucky to have enough gas to make it through the night. >> reporter: we crawled east along a treacherous i-30. >> you can see the car and truck stuck in the snow. the traffic there can barely make its way along. the conditions bleak. the wind is blowing. visibility is poor. >> reporter: we came across megan reid who lost control of her car. >> i couldn't see the road pretty much -- >> reporter: it was just whiteout? >> yeah. >> reporter: so you wound up in the ditch here? >> uh-huh, there was snow blowing so hard you couldn't even see your headlights in front of you. it was horrible. >> reporter: three indiana counties declared states of emergency. some roads were barely recognizable. >> right now, it's just a safety issue. >> reporter: by late today, shawn cunningham was almost home. >> we've gotten food, water and a break so we're on the mend. >> reporter: their ordeal had lasted nearly 24 hours on a trip that usually takes less than 4.
chris bury, abc news, on u.s. 30, in indiana. >> a lot of intrepid people out there in this weather. we turn, next, to the major legal blow delivered today of the historic health care reform law. a federal judge in virginia ruled today that a key part of the overhaul violates the constitution. it mandates americans to have health insurance coverage. with the bill now just starting to go into effect, what does it mean for families in america? jake tapper tells us. he gin joins us from the white e tonight. >> reporter: good evening, diane. white house officials expected this case will end up before the supreme court. at issue, as you say, the individual mandate, the requirement under the new health care law, that every american who can purchase it, purchase health insurance. the health care bill that president obama signed into law in march requires that every american who can afford it buys health insurance. federal district judge henry hudson today called that requirement "unconstitutional."
what's called an individual mandate he said "exceeds the constitutional boundaries of congressional power." at its core, this dispute is not simply about regulating the business of insurance or crafting a scheme of universal health insurance coverage, he wrote, it's about an individual's right to choose to participate. >> this case is not about health insurance. it is not about health care. it's about liberty. and the judge said as much in his order. >> reporter: the white house argued today the goal of the health care law, coverage for every american, will not work without this key provision. that the part of the law requiring that insurance companies cover those with pre-existing conditions can only be paid for by requiring all americans to have insurance, thereby expanding the pool of money. >> if you are somebody that cannot get health care because of a pre-existing condition, the guarantee that when this is
fully implemented in 2014, that you'll be able to do that, that's wiped away in a ruling like this. >> reporter: and white house health care czar nancy ann deparle today was quick to point out that other judges have dismissed 14 previous lawsuits against the health care law. >> i think our record's pretty good and overall i believe we'll prevail on this constitutionality question in the long run. news/"washington post" poll released today has the health care law at its lowest level of popularity yet, with 43% support and 52% opposition, just weeks away from the republican house taking office and they, of course, are eager to overturn the law. we also have a note tonight about the tax bill. the president hailed the move forward on the bill. >> if there's one thing we can agree on, it's the urgent work of protecting the working class
families, removing uncertainty for america's businesses and giving our economy a boost as we head into the new year. >> and more from our new poll. it shows broad support on the tax cut bill. 69% for the plan which extends the current tax cuts for all americans, including the wealthy. and extends jobless benefits to the long-term unemployed. another note at the white house, the president signed a child nutrition bill today, admitting he's glad it passed for american kids and his home life. with the first lady at his side, the president smiled about the pressure. >> not only am i very proud of the bill, but had i not been able to get this passed, i would be sleeping on the couch. >> one of the first things the bill will do is set nutrition standards to ensure the foods served in school cafeterias and vending machines is healthier. and now we move on to the story that stunned so many people, two days after bernie madoff's son, mark, committed
suicide here in new york, the story of son and father continues to emerge. chief investigative correspondent brian ross has been on the madoff case since day one. >> reporter: diane, bernie madoff's lawyer said today he will not seek to attend the funeral of his son mark, and it's unlikely he would have been welcome in any case. despite his death, the legal proceedings against mark madoff continued today. they seek tens of millions of dollars from him and even from his children. the 46-year-old eldest son of madoff knew the legal process against him would drag on for years, ending his life of luxury and privilege. his father's former secretary said mark had been struggling with the stigma of being a madoff. >> it had to have been unrelenting, for him to go there and to feel that he had no way out. and to think that, you know, people would be better off without him here, because that's not true. >> reporter: just before he hung himself with a dog leash, madoff sent an e-mail to his wife in florida saying, "i love you,
send someone to take care of nick," his 2-year-old son who was asleep in another room in the new york apartment. mark madoff's first love was fly-fishing, not wall street, and he was remembered today by friends on a facebook page as a sensitive, caring person. so sad, sleep tight mark, wrote a former madoff employee. by all accounts, his father placed his two sons in jobs that kept them away from what would turn out to be the illegal side of the family business. but the lawsuits filed against him alleged, "if the family members been doing their jobs, honestly and faithfully, the madoff ponzi scheme might never had succeeded or continued for so long." >> and he had to live for the last two years under the scrutiny and innuendos and people alluding to the fact that he should've known or had to know.
well, you know what, he didn't. >> reporter: in fact, after his father confessed his crimes, it was mark madoff who turned in his father, ignoring his request mark wait a week before calling the fbi. the family turn torn apart, diane, shakespearean kind of tragedy. >> hard not to think about what his father is thinking tonight. thank you so much, brian ross. still ahead on "world news" -- the business of college cheating in the 21st century. how future doctors, lawyers, even teachers get an edge today. a diary of what happened on board that trampoline of a cruise ship. and what does this justin bieber fan and the old spice guy have in common? we'll tell you. i'm off to the post office... ok. uh, a little help...
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years writing them for other students who pay him. what's the most you've been paid to write a paper? >> 175 pange accounting paper that paid me $2,000. >> reporter: a lot of people would say $2,000 is a good chunk of change. ed is not alone. this is 21st century cheating. the outsourcing of college work. >> hey there, what's up? do you really want to spend countless days and nights stuck working on your homework? yeah, neither did i. >> reporter: there are companies out there that do this. >> thousands. >> reporter: and it's perfectly legal? >> it is, it is. i pay taxes. >> reporter: in fact, there are thousands of writers hard at work on finals right now. they're just not the ones actually in school. you say you've written towards a master's degree in cognitive psychology? a ph.d. in sociology? >> uh-huh. >> reporter: business administration, pharmacology, maritime security? >> uh-huh. >> reporter: did you ever go to a public library to do any research? >> no, no, absolutely not.
i google everything. everything is googleable. >> reporter: by some estimates, nearly 70% of college students say they cheated. we asked five professors with experienced eyes if we ordered a paper for one of their exams, could they tell the difference? we pay extra for a rush job, $340 for a paper on ancient literatur literature. we hand it in along with other papers actually written by students. all three of these papers look like papers you would get? >> absolutely. >> reporter: was there one paper, if you had to guess, that would be the one that was paid for? you say? >> paper c. >> i would have said c. >> c. >> d. >> a. >> reporter: it was a, just one professor picked it out. and even so, she admitted this -- >> this paper -- i mean, what would i do? i'd grade it. >> reporter: because there's nothing about it that says -- >> there's nothing about it that i can prove. >> reporter: in fact, one of the professors actually put the paper used by scanning software
used by so many universities that looked for plagiarism. the results? >> everything's here correct. >> reporter: another paper passing muster. why is why ghost writers like ed will continue to get those desperate e-mails like this one from students. >> this customer says, where you are, can you get my messages? please, i pay a lot and don't have to fail -- >> reporter: i'm curious, where are the parents? >> oftentimes, right alongside the student. they are paying for the student's paper. >> reporter: we met gene, now a sophomore who used the allowance from his mother to pay for his work. >> i ordered multiple papers online. >> reporter: are you okay with yourself doing that? >> yeah, i was 100% okay with it. i know at least ten people that do are trt t. >> reporter: ten? >> at least ten. >> reporter: how much did you make? >> i was on pace to make 66,000. >> reporter: you stopped writing? >> i have. >> reporter: do you wish you had not done it at all? >> absolutely not. i don't know if anybody in the world would trade the education i've had. >> the one kid used the
allowance, his mother's allowance. what's the answer to this? what are the teachers going to do? >> part of the answer might come from the teachers who took part in our experiment. they said smaller class size his so they know their students on a personal level and they expect to hear their voices reflected back in the papers turned in. that's how the one professor got it right, she said nothing in the paper was anything we discussed in the lecture. >> eye opening. you can watch a lot more of david's report. don't miss it tonight on "nightline." and coming up, hurricane force winds. you should save for retirement, but what happens when you're about to retire? woman: how do you go from saving to spending? fidelity helped us get to this point, and now we're talking about what comes next. man: we worked together to create a plan to help our money last. woman: so we can have the kind of retirement we want. now, you know how this works. just stay on the line. oh, yeah.
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passengers on board that luxury cruise liner battered by hurricane force winds and 30 foot waves this weekend are speaking out about the ordeal, saying they're grateful to being alive and offering a kind of diary on their moments on the high seas. linsey davis has the story. >> reporter: first, a stomach churning ride. now rage is swelling inside the ship. >> that's not fair! >> reporter: after this uproar, royal caribbean announced passengers will get a refund. the ship was slammed by 30 foot waves and more than 60-mile-per-hour winds. furniture toppled. and the ship's 20 foot christmas tree came down. at least 30 passengers were injured. >> for those split few seconds,
we thought we were gonna die. >> reporter: there have been some pretty rough waters for the cruise industry. in tampa, a ship was prevented from docking because of high winds and rough conditions. last week, it was this cruise ship in the antarctic. and the waves that struck off the coast of spain in march. >> people ran to their computers to report this. they didn't wait till they pulled into port. >> reporter: the timing is terrible. >> because it's wave period, wave period is a time of year when most cruises are booked. >> reporter: so far, no signs americans are holding off on booking cruises. but the industry is watching closely and experts say if there's more high anxiety on the high seas, expect some big discounts. linsey davis, abc news, new york. and coming up, this double rainbow made the top ten list. [ male announcer ] it's simple physics... a body at rest tends to stay at rest... while a body in motion tends to stay in motion. staying active can actually ease arthritis symptoms.
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>> reporter: no vision too odd -- >> double rainbow, oh, my god. >> reporter: no citrus too annoying. >> wassuuuuuup! >> reporter: no child too endearing. >> i love justin bieber. >> reporter: so what happened to these low-res, low-tech sensations? greyson chance, the sixth grader who stunned an oklahoma talent show with his version of lady gaga's -- ♪ >> reporter: -- "pap as zi," scored a record deal with ellen degeneres' label. the 3-year-old girl who loved justin bieber so much it made her cry, kept her tears in check when she finally got to meet him. paul vasquez said he knew there was something special going on when he saw not one, but two yosemite -- >> oh, my god. a double rainbow. >> reporter: -- landed a gig on a commercial for windows. >> wow, look at that. >> reporter: then there is isaih mustafa. >> hello, ladies. >> look at your man. now back to me. now back to your man. now back to me. >> reporter: how do you smell? >> personally, i smell like championships. >> reporter: this fresh scented scantily-clad former pro
football player turned old spice spokesman got some guest roles on tv shows. what's under the towel? >> there's nothing under the towel. thyme a thespian. a method actor. >> reporter: along with spinning cars, rolling balls and a little dose of "twilight," that's what we watched most in 2010. 13 million hours of video. in 2011, maybe we'll break away from the computer and get outside. who knows, maybe we'll see a -- >> double rainbow all the way across the sky! >> reporter: john berman, abc news, new york. >> on to 2011. and we hope you have a great night tonight. good to begin another week with you. see you again tomorrow night. tles ]
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